I remember an old high school Buddie had one. I don't think it was the quickest thing to ever hit the snow, but it sure did sound like something I've never heard before. Their mostly collector items now. I haven't seen one since. I've always wondered why nobody uses these high winding engines anymore. They are small,light and produce great power. My guess is that Mazda has the rights to this engine now and won't give it up.
The Wankel is a type of Rotary engine. Mazda uses their new "renesis" engine, which is of a different design. I used to sell Mazdas... throughout the year the main reason that no one produces them is cost of technology. Most everyone gave up the Rotary design by 1970. Lack of torque, excess emissions, seals going bad (a rotary's rings), etc are a few reasons that led to its demise. Mazda spent billions producing an engine that would be within today's emissions standards. The RX-8 (not meant to be a replacement for the beloved RX-7) has a 1.3 liter Renesis in it. Producing somewhere around 250 hp. They never told us what the torque was. Why? That thing was a DOG, I would guess somewhere below 125lb of torque. To get the stick shift version to just MOVE without stalling you'd have to rev it above 3500. Cool thing about a rotary engine (And a reason it would be perfect for a sled) is that the HP and torque isn't a curve. It's linear - in that the higher the RPM's the higher the altogether power. And hearing a rotary spin at 10K is a really cool sound. From what I heard talking to a guy who raced Mazda's new rotary they'd spin them up to 13k stock without a problem. And that engine block only weighs 85 lbs.
Sorry to be long winded. I've thought the same thing. I'd like to get my hands on an old rotary-powered sled and try to do some updating - IE moving the intake ports to the sides, newer updated seals, etc. Like was mentioned above - most of the stuff for it is impossible to find. Didn't OMC make one too?
Yep, That is what they look/sound like! I had mine for sale at Waconia last year, and lots of people liked the sound, but no-one wanted to buy it? After some serious cleaning, and some new parts, my '71 Panther will be with me for a few more years![8D] Its a 303 Sachs/Wankel, and it is NOT fast! ARCTIC[attachment=51422]
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